Hello, Darlings! Step One To Understanding Style-Lifestyle Audit. As promised, we are going to dive deep into the topic of style. Style is the third part of the ever confusing fashion puzzle. The first part is understanding your body shape, the next one is knowing what colors look best on you.
If you do not know your body shape, there is a great tool that Kelly Snyder, from Adore Your Wardrobe, has created. The Body Shape Calculator is what I used in one of my first lessons in her Signature Adore Your Wardore class. Knowing your body shape is critical to understanding fashion and what works for your body. When shopping online you will need to have your body measurements handy so you can better find pieces that fit and keep returns to a minimum.
As for color, I have another tool from Shari Brandel of Fashion Meets Faith who has years of experience as a fashion/image consultant. She has a Color Analysis Quiz to help you narrow down your best colors using a tonal analysis (Clear/Deep/Warm/Cool/Soft/Light) approach instead of a seasonal (Winter/Spring/Fall/Summer). You may want to have a friend nearby to help you with the questions. Shari Brandel has a great YouTube Channel with lots of practical insights.
I had my colors analyzed recently using House Of Colour. Fairly new to the US, House Of Colour is training new consultants as fast as they can. It is an investment with a typical consult being over $200. But you can take Color/Style/ and Body Shape quizzes on the Kettlewell Colour website. Of course, these types of online quizzes are only as good as your preception and input.
Step One To Understanding Style- Lifestyle Audit
What Is A Lifestyle Audit?
A Lifestyle Audit is where you examine if your closet fits your TRUE lifestyle. Does your closet reflect a life you do not live? As we enter our “second act” we may find our lifestyle changes drastically. Covid really changed the look of the workplace. Many people who may have had a corporate wardrobe, now find themselves working from home using more of a casual wardrobe that is “Zoom appropriate”. These people, as they return to the workplace, will want to find a balance between the comfort of home and the corporate wardrobe. Even before Covid’s restrictions and lockdowns, the corporate workplace was becoming more casual may be too casual in some cases.
Lifestyle Audit- Write It Down!
Grab a notebook and start writing down everything you wear this week. Including underwear and shoes, if it goes on your body- write it down. I suggest you do this for the next 10 days to 2 weeks. Give each outfit a category such as work, church, errands, workout, tennis, date night, special occasion. You can assign your categories as you see fit.
Then after the 10 days to 2 weeks are over, start adding up the clothes for the different categories. Also noting if you wore the same outfit multiple times.
Kelly Snyder from Adore Your Wardrobe has a free Frustration To Function self-guided course that walks you thru a closet/lifestyle audit. This course is going away soon (end of the year)but it is an excellent tool with worksheets and videos to help you better understand how your closet may not be reflecting your true lifestyle.
Make A List Of What Your REALLY Wear Each Day
When I conducted a Lifestyle Audit I found that I had too many clothes for church/date night and not enough casual at-home outfits. I am also a huge tennis player and play as many as 3 days a week. When you walk into my closet today, you will see that reflected in the many tennis outfits.
Looking Ahead With Those Special Events
Look ahead on your calendar. Now that COVID restrictions are being relaxed, do you have special events that you will be attending? Weddings are the hardest and it is always going to have some go-to outfits. Unfortunately, funerals are also activities that it is good to have your “funeral attire” ready so you don’t have to think about it.
Don’t Forget To Check Your Underwear/Bra/PJ
When you are conducting your audit, check to make sure you have appropriate undergarments, bras that are comfortable. I have started switching out my traditional bras to more “comfort bras” such as Soma’s Embliss and Bali’s Comfort Revolution Bra. How are your pajamas and loungewear? Mine are getting worn out and I need a complete overhaul in that category.
Do You Workout Or Have Activities That Require Certain Clothes?
I do pilates, play tennis and pickleball, ride my bike, swim as much as 9 months out of the year. So my wardrobe needs to reflect this and I need to have comfortable clothing for these activities.
Has Your LIfestyle Change With Retirement?
Now that my husband has retired, we have started to travel. So my wardrobe needs to have easy travel pieces that I can mix and match to create comfortable outfits for many activities. You may even think of them as “tourist clothes”.
How Your Local Climate Needs To Be Reflected In Your Wardrobe
Finally, I live in the South and our weather does not get very cold. Matter of fact, fall weather can actually happen near Christmas. I have worn shorts on Christmas Day! So my closet needs to reflect the climate I live in. I don’t need heavy sweaters or big bulky coats and jackets. I need to have clothing that I can wear for warmer weather even if the season has changed. Note**I do have a ski jacket for that once-a-year snow (some years) or an occasional trip to snow ski.
Keeping It Real!
Why are we starting here? Because when we dive into style, you are going to need to take each bit with a “grain of salt” and be able to decipher if it truly works for your lifestyle. Having a real grasp of your lifestyle needs can help you immediately disregard certain aspects of style. It can also help you wade thru fashion fad and trends. Knowing when to buy and when to save. What works on your body shape and what colors look the best.
Time To Do A Closet Purge
Change of seasons is always a good time for a lifestyle/wardrobe audit and a closet purge. Time to try on those jeans/pants to make sure they fit and are in good condition. Purge anything from your wardrobe that does not fit your current lifestyle or you haven’t worn in many years. Make sure you have some special occasions/wedding/funeral outfits that you can grab that look awesome on you. I did a major purge of my underwear drawer and I realized how many of my panties were stretched out and not in good condition.
Making A List And Checking It Twice
Make sure you have the absolute basics and they are in great condition and fit appropriately. For fall a great pair of jeans ( I love the Wit and Wisdom Absolution Jeans From Nordstrom) and neutral pants (black, brown, navy, or khaki). I have a nice selection of black and navy Ponte knit pants that I can wear with everything (I like Boston Proper, Beyond Travel Pants, and Beyond Travel Cropped Pants) Start making a list, inventories are going to be low this year so it is important that the basics are taken care of.
The Next Step In Style- Knowing and Understanding Your Body Features Will Help You Understand Your Style.
Next week we are going to dive really deep as we examine our personal body features to help us understand certain aspects of style.